Faculty Candidate Seminar - Debra Wunch

05/16/2018 - 1:00pm
Eckart Lecture Hall room 227j
Event Description: 


DATE:          May 16th, Wednesday, 1p.m.  

LOCATION:     Eckart Lecture Hall
SPEAKER:      Debra Wunch, Ph.D.
TITLE:  Using remote sensing of atmospheric trace gases to learn about the carbon cycle


The carbon cycle describes the flow of carbon, typically in the form of carbon dioxide or methane, between the atmosphere, oceans and land. It is influenced by changes in the sources and sinks of carbon, including anthropogenic releases (fossil fuel burning), changes in land use, the respiration and photosynthesis of plants, and the uptake and release by oceans. The main challenges in carbon cycle research today are to identify the sources and sinks of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere at a range of spatiotemporal scales, and to understand how the natural components of the carbon cycle will respond to human emissions. 

Atmospheric measurements of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are crucial for quantifying their sources and sinks and monitoring their long-term trends. Our longest, most precise and accurate atmospheric records of the gases have been made in situ near the ground. In the past decade or so, significant improvements in remote sensing have made it possible to measure these trace gases remotely from the ground and from space with the precision and accuracy needed to advance our understanding of the carbon cycle. In this talk, I will focus on what we have learned from the Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON), a ground-based remote sensing network that measures carbon dioxide, methane, and other trace gases. I will also discuss NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2), the satellite for which TCCON provides the primary validation dataset.
 Faculty Host:  Vicki Grassian (vhgrassian@ucsd.edu)
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